I am a great believer in sleep. I am usually in bed by 10.30 or 11pm. If my husband, Bob, and I watch TV before retiring, it will be in another room. If I am writing a book, I will be up at 6am the next day. If I am not writing, it will be more like 7am.
I’ve always been a careful eater, because I put on weight quickly. I don’t have a big appetite. The day starts with coffee, then at about 8am I have a toasted muffin and a banana. Lunch I eat standing: usually a salad of endive, beetroot, perhaps a slice of smoked salmon. For dinner I like sole, branzino [sea bass], fishcakes or the occasional bolognese.
People don’t seem to understand why writers keep on writing. Why would I stop? I don’t know what I would do if I wasn’t working. I live by schedules. A normal day involves editing the previous day’s work before breakfast, then writing afterwards. I break for lunch at 1pm and finish the day about 4pm or 4.30pm. Every hour, I have a break and do some walking. I can use a computer, but I only do that if I need to do some research. Even then, I prefer looking up anything in my library. I type on an IBM Selectric. My way is my way.